Solution Brief

virtual mechandising solutions

Visual Merchandising Solutions Bring the Online Experience In-Store

AOPEN’s advanced digital communication products offer retailers right-fit visual media solutions that leverage m-commerce and strengthen their in-store engagement strategies.

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Mobility has made retail much more complicated. Not long ago “shopping” meant physical stores where customers browsed aisles and racks for items that might interest them, and where retailers provided eye-catching displays, competitive pricing, personal service, and expert knowledge.

Fast forward to today and everything has changed. Shopping is still shopping, but the way consumers find products and make purchases is radically different. Commerce is now mobile—viewed as a natural extension of the digital age. Consumers are commonly using smartphones and tablets to research products and pricing online, often from competitors, and even while shopping in a physical store.

It’s another seismic upheaval for brick-and mortar retailers who have only recently regained their bearings after the e-commerce revolution. Mobility has further disrupted the landscape. Instead of being tethered to stationary computers and bulky laptops, consumers are now empowered with anywhere, anytime access to online shopping resources, opportunities, and experiences. And they expect retailers to keep up.

Harnessing the power and potential of mobile commerce (m-commerce) is retail’s new challenge. If successful, stores will be transformed into “experience centers” where digital technologies reinforce in-store strategies.

AOPEN is helping retailers meet this challenge. A global leader in digital communication products, AOPEN provides industry-leading visual merchandising solutions that help retailers leverage m-commerce capability in-store. Their solutions are designed to captivate customers’ attention, connect them to the brand, and ultimately increase revenue.

Shifting Store Priorities: Mobility Looms Large

According to independent consulting firm, IHL Group, the move to cross-channel integration has been nothing short of astonishing. It has been identified as the number one priority for retailers in both 2012 and 2013. In 2007 it was 14th on the list.1 The main catalyst for this impressive move up the rankings has been the mobile revolution, a game changer that has turned retail on its head. It has forced brands to rethink the manner in which their stores and store associates interact with customers. The ubiquity of mobile devices—combined with the pervasiveness of digital technologies—has fundamentally changed the perception of “being online.” What was once considered a unique experience is now tightly woven into the fabric of daily life, as evidenced by the skyrocketing increases in mobile subscriptions and device users.

Consider this:

At the end of 2012, there were 6.8 billion mobile subscriptions worldwide—equivalent to 96 percent of the world population.2 By the end of 2016, this number is projected to increase to nearly 8.5 billion.3
In Europe, there are nearly 422 million mobile subscriptions (nearly 70 percent penetration). In the United States the number is nearly 322 million (over 100 percent penetration). Russia has reached a whopping 160 percent penetration, while China is at nearly 90 percent.4
Smartphones and tablets are projected to outsell laptop PCs by 2016, with worldwide growth rates of 17.9 percent and 35.3 percent, respectively.5
Mobile advertising is the second highest driver of m-commerce—at 22 percent—and 70 percent of consumers view mobile ads as a personal invitation as opposed to a personal invasion.6
Mobility and online engagement are less the exception and more the rule. So it’s little wonder that consumers expect companies to deliver online-like experiences at every touch point. For brick-and-mortar retailers, one of the most effective ways to do this is by implementing high-impact, visually immersive systems that engage customers, empower store associates, and drive sales.

AOPEN Helps Retailers Engage Connected Customers

AOPEN specializes in digital communication solutions that capitalize on m-commerce trends by leveraging the latest visual media and mobile technologies. AOPEN’s visual merchandising solutions span a wide variety of sophisticated media players, digital signs, and touch appliances. AOPEN enables retailers to bring the online experience in-store with innovative, vibrant, media-rich communications that:

Maximize In-Store Advertising Potential. By combining video, audio, text, and graphics with gesture-based or multi-touch engagement, an array of digital sign options virtually showcases products, services, and promotions to shoppers, and enables signups for newsletters and loyalty programs.
Integrate Social Media. Consumers can view and interact with a variety of social media sites and capabilities from in-store digital signs, including Twitter, Facebook, and product reviews.
Enable Local-Area Marketing. A centralized content management system lets retailers engage prospective customers with messages that have local-area relevance. For example, messages could promote a sale on products related to a sports event happening in town. This capability can be further reinforced via in-store motion sensors that dynamically change sign content if a shopper is in the area.
Communicate with Customer Smartphones. Shoppers can use in-store signs to create “product wish lists” and send them to their mobile devices, giving them a convenient way to review and purchase favorite items any time.
Enhance the Sales Process. State-of-the-art web and touch-screen technologies give sales associates the latest product and inventory information at their fingertips—via smartphones and tablets—enabling them to engage with shoppers anywhere on the sales floor, answer questions in real-time, streamline the decision-making process, and expedite sales times.
Deliver the Right Message at the Right Time. Using analytics tools such as the Intel® Audience Impression Metrics Suite (Intel® AIM Suite), retailers can gather a wealth of anonymous customer information including dwell times, age range, and gender. They can use this information to dynamically serve relevant messages, measure advertising effectiveness, and determine marketing ROI.
Service by Design

In today’s omni-channel environment, traditional retailers are struggling to implement solutions that effectively deliver the compelling shopping experience today’s consumers want—innovative communication, sensory engagement, customized offers, and immediate access—while staying within budget and resource constraints. Because “best solution” is as unique as each retailer, AOPEN uses a consultative approach, working with each retailer to fully understand its specific business goals and needs before designing a best-fit solution. And when it comes to service, AOPEN offers retailers the flexibility to use their own resources. AOPEN can manage the entire solution end-to-end, or craft something in between. Its guiding philosophy is to provide retailers with a range of opportunities so they can pick the exact features and options they need to manage part or all of the value chain, from remote management, content creation, and distribution to social media integration and analytics.

Trusted Partnerships

Since its founding in 1996, AOPEN has been working with an ever-expanding ecosystem of hardware and software solution providers who are committed to providing retailers with comprehensive technology-based solutions that enhance customer engagement and keep stores competitive.

Intel® Technologies

AOPEN retail solutions are built on powerful Intel technologies, including:

Processors. Intel® Core™ processors deliver top-of-the-line performance for compute intensive tasks, including high-definition digital signage and content management systems.
Analytics. Intel AIM Suite gives retailers and brands the power to know how shoppers are responding to visual messaging and how they move through the retail environment. Using anonymous viewer analytics technology, Intel AIM Suite profiles viewers by gender, age range, and dwell times. The data can be used in real time to tailor on-screen content and measure campaign effectiveness.
Manageability. Remote management is enabled using Intel® vPro™ technology7 and the functions provided by Intel® Active Management Technology (Intel® AMT).8 They make it possible to remotely manage, monitor, and repair thousands of systems and devices, reducing headcount and eliminating costly service calls.


Mobility now dominates consumer expectations and, in turn, store investment plans. To meet consumer expectations and remain competitive, retailers are recognizing the need to incorporate today’s mobile lifestyle in the brick-and-mortar experience. Innovators like AOPEN are helping retailers capitalize on m-commerce technologies and bring the online experience in-store.

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